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LOCATIONIsle of Wight location



NEWSBoatyard Services






Blue MoonIn 1954 a Captain Jessel gave the yard an order for a 19' fast-launch for his use between Portsmouth and Bembridge at weekends. This boat was designed by Fred Cooper a famous local designer who had designed 'BLUEBIRD'. These boats were such a success that 6 were built in the yard.

Fred Cooper also designed a Hamilton jet-drive craft for the Dowty Group. The yard made the mould for these small fast craft, and also the test model.

The next large building job was a Reg Freeman designed 57' motor-yacht called 'LAILIA' for a Mr. Aubrey Jones which was luxuriously fitted out. The vessel's home is now in Germany.

The whole work-force was getting larger. The Nissen huts were removed and replaced with larger buildings, and part of St. Helens Quay was rented for use. Nothing compared though for the next job in 1958, which was to convert an old 97' motor-yacht into a 100' yacht to look like a Baltic Trader. This old yacht was built for Sir Thomas Beecham, and named 'MAHCEEB' (Beecham - backwards).

During the Second World War this ship was lying in Denmark. Her copper bottom sheathing had been removed by the Germans. The yard renewed the copper, put on a raked bow, deck-houses and interior and fitted a new super-structure. The whole vessel was luxuriously fitted out, including a crane for a car and launch. The owner was a Mr. Scrutton and the vessel was renamed 'APHRA'.

Henry Rose II'HENRY ROSE' was sold and in 1960 the yard built a larger vessel, named 'HENRY ROSE 11' to assist with the growing tourist trade. She was 60' long, of timber construction, carried 150 people and had a bar and lounge. She was designed by Reg Freeman. Unfortunately, because of tidal restrictions into Bembridge Harbour she could not be used to her full potential, and was sold to an operator in Brixham. She is still operating in the West Country.

In 1961 a very fast sailing yacht was built to a Robert Clarke design, for Commander Carr. She was 37' long, built of pitch-pine and oak and named 'SHERIDAN'.

From the late 50's to the end of the 60's, 5 Illingworth & Primrose designed yachts were built, ranging from 27' - 36' 'BRAGANZA' for the Royal Navy, 'SARIE MARAIS' for the Royal Marines, 'MIDLAND MERLE' for the Midland Bank, also 'RED JACKET' and 'CLAYMORE' who were shipped to America.


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